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By Meagan Raker
Inspired by the New-York Historical Society’s annual Holiday Express exhibit, we are getting ready for Christmas by reading Chris Van Allsburg’s classic book, The Polar Express. When a boy discovers a magical train waiting outside his window on Christmas Eve night, he is soon off on a snowy journey to the North Pole. Go on that journey yourself by creating your own Polar Express train and train tracks by following the steps below! Don’t forget to join us live at 3:30 pm every Tuesday via Zoom and Friday in-person at the Museum for our Little New-Yorkers Hello Song, silly games and dances, a craft, and, of course, our read aloud!
- Something to color with: markers, crayons, pencils, pastels, or a cool combo!
* A note on supplies: If you don’t have exactly the supplies listed, improvise! These projects are designed to be versatile, so feel free to use whatever materials and tools you have at home. And if your final product looks different than what you see here, that’s wonderful!
STEP 1: Add Some Color!
Time to design your own Polar Express! Will your train look like the illustrations in the book? Or will you give it a makeover? Maybe this Polar Express is all the colors of the rainbow! Or a Christmas red and green! Don’t forget to color in the North Pole sign, evergreen tree, and present as well! How will you decorate the bell that the boy in the story got from Santa Claus?
STEP 2: Cut Out Your Train, Pieces, and Tracks
Careful cutting time! Start by cutting along the black line between the train tracks and the train and North Pole pieces.
Next, carefully cut out the pieces and each section of the train track by following the black lines.
When you are done, you should pieces like this!
STEP 3: Design Your Track
Put your train track pieces together any way you like! Will you make a round circular track? Or a twisty snake? Try printing out more copies of the template to make your track even longer!
STEP 4: Go for a Ride!
It’s time to head out on an adventure! Visit the North Pole! Or the beach! Or the New-York Historical Society! Where will your Polar Express go today?
Thanks for following along, Little New-Yorkers. We hope to see you, and your creations, at Little New-Yorkers soon!